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Role of MDCT in staging colon cancer

Dear readers,

Classification and staging of colon cancers are commonly based on the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) TNM system. The use of multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) is one of the staging criteria adopted by this classification system. Indeed, MDCT provides a high level of sensitivity, specificity, accuracy and precision in the diagnosis of colon cancer at different stages, becoming the most reliable imaging modality for detection, characterization and classification of this condition and for the appropriate stratification of patients with high-risk tumors.

The role of MDCT in this setting is the topic of this month’s Focus on, in which Prof. Laghi’s medical team rigorously describes the MDCT techniques and protocols, the principles utilized for TNM classification, and the advantages of MDCT for a correct management. Furthermore, the selected scientific articles herein proposed illustrate the valuable role of MDCT for pretreatment staging, detection of synchronous cancers and localization of colon cancers. Finally, the two clinical cases offer useful examples of the TNM approach to colon cancer staging based on MDCT utilization in real-life practice.

Suggestions for topics to be covered in future issues of this newsletter are welcome as usual. Please send your ideas to us at

From the team



CT staging of colon cancer
Nicola Panvini, Domenico De Santis, Damiano Caruso, Andrea Laghi

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Komono A, Shida D, Iinuma G et al. Preoperative T staging of colon cancer using CT colonography with multiplanar reconstruction: new diagnostic criteria based on “bordering vessels”. Int J Colorectal Dis. 2019 Apr;34(4):641-648.

Teke ME, Emuakhagbon V-S. Trends in colorectal cancer surveillance: current strategies and future innovations. Curr Colorectal Cancer Rep. 2019;15:79.

Taya M, McHargue C, Ricci ZJ et al. Comparison of extracolonic findings and clinical outcomes in a screening and diagnostic CT colonography population. Abdom Radiol (NY). 2019 Feb;44(2):429-437.

Flor N, Zanchetta E, Di Leo G et al. Synchronous colorectal cancer using CT colonography vs. other means: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Abdom Radiol (NY). 2018 Dec;43(12):3241-3249.